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Veterans’ Day

Veterans’ Day -- An early reminder

On November 11th at 11 AM, please take two minutes to honor our Veterans.  Also, take a look at this song by a Canadian - Terry Kelly. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pL1Z1xIUtFM

 

Another interesting Veteran's video

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1rZwCKEqmEs

 

 

What is a Veteran?  I like the following definition by an unknown author:

A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to "The United States of America," for an amount of "up to and including my life."

 

World War I officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919 outside the town of Versailles, France.  Fighting had formally ceased some seven months earlier when an armistice between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.

 

The following year, President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed November 11th as the first remembrance of Armistice Day.  He saw it as a day filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory.

 

The original concept for the celebration was for a day observed with parades and public meetings and a brief suspension of business beginning at 11:00 AM on November 11th.

On June 1, 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed legislation changing the name of the legal holiday from Armistice Day to Veteran’s Day.

 

The observance of Armistice Day was changed to the 4th Monday in October by a Congressional Declaration in 1968.   Many states had changed their observances, but, it soon became evident that November 11th was a date of historic significance to many Americans. Subsequently, in 1978 Congress returned the observance to its traditional date.

 

Veterans Day gives us all the opportunity to celebrate the bravery, service, heroism, gallantry and sacrifice of all U.S. veterans.

 

In the Doylestown area, Veterans observe the day in many ways.  In past years, Veterans from all local groups --- Veterans of Foreign Wars, Vietnam Veterans of America, American Legion and the Marine Corps League -- have visited many area schools and participated in events from assemblies to class room discussions with students.  I had the honor, along with several other Veterans from various Doylestown groups, of participating in several classroom sessions at Buckingham Elementary last year.  Each Veteran was assigned a group of four or five students and we answered questions ranging from “Where did we serve?”, “Did you miss your family?”  to “How was the food?”  It is great to see that the students are genuinely interested in talking with and learning from Veterans.

 

Plumstead Christian School observes the day this year on Saturday, November 10th with their Annual Veterans Day Program.  It begins with the raising of the colors and is followed by a patriotic production and a home cooked buffet breakfast served to Veterans by the boy scouts.

 

 

November 11th is important to the over 26 million Veterans in the United States.  According to the 2000 Census, about six percent of these veterans are women.  Over 35 % of all Veterans are over 65.  Approximately six million are WWII Veterans; four million are Korean, eight million served during the Vietnam War era and three million served in the Persian Gulf War.

 

Veterans Day may no longer be a holiday for many of us, but it can still be observed with a short moment of silence at 11:00 AM.  As the War in Afghanistan continues, we will continue to add to the ranks of Veterans in the U.S.  November 11th will always be important to all of them.  Please remember to “Thank a Vet” on Veterans Day and every day. 

 

Many businesses honor Veterans on or around Veterans Day each year.   Please see http://themilitarywallet.com/veterans-day-free-meals-and-discounts/

 

An internet search may be the easiest way to explore these offers.

 

 

 

 

The following poem is by Linda Ellis, who graciously gave me the permission to reprint it.

Mommy, What is a Veteran?”

by Linda Ellis, © 1998

“Mommy, what is a veteran?”
My child asked in an innocent way.
“And could you please explain to me
why we have a Veteran’s Day?”

My mind searched for the adjectives
that might help me clarify
those people, who for their country,
have looked death in the eye.

I quickly grabbed the dictionary
to see what Webster may have used,
but “one who served in the armed forces,”
were not the words that I would choose.

But, how do you describe a veteran —
heroes you have never met,
those you’ll never know the names of
and yet … never will forget?

How do you describe a veteran?
How do you convey a definition
for those who brought this country’s dreams
to their ultimate fruition?

How do you describe a veteran?
Strangers who fought for you.
Men and women who risked their lives
for people they never knew?

How do you describe a veteran
and the sacrifices they made
so that you and your children’s children
could live free … and unafraid?

How do you describe a veteran
for a child’s sake?
You say “A veteran is a person to whom
we owe every breath we take.”

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Ed Boom November 07, 2012 at 01:49 PM
Great article. Well written to support the Veterans.
Steve Ruane November 08, 2012 at 10:42 AM
THanks Bob!! Steve

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